Vilakazi’s Narrative Is Unacceptable

The outright admission by Dr Sibongile Vilakazi (Business Report, May 15) that she is a direct beneficiary of the Black Management Forum and BEE and that her goal of economic advancement is to ensure that “poverty does not have a black face,” makes one wonder how come such remarks are not termed racist.

When a white person states that he or she is a direct beneficiary of apartheid, the automatic conclusion is that he or she benefited from racism.

Although 29 years have passed since apartheid was terminated and non-racialism was constitutionally embraced, how is it that Dr Vilakazi’s claims and aims are not racist?

By uncritically and even lauding Vilakazi’s claims and aims, Business Report is effectively saying that white, Indian and coloured poverty does not exist and that the aspirations of people from those demographic groups are not on its radar screen. As a long-standing subscriber of BR, this is an unacceptable narrative.

As for Dr Vilakazi, instead of acknowledging how she has benefited from black racism, she should be acknowledging the immense economic cost and failure of BEE. It has deterred foreign investment, driven up the cost of goods and made a small minority obscenely wealthy while the poverty BEE ostensibly aimed to alleviate, has been exacerbated.

Given the narrative on which Vilakazi is obviously premised, it is difficult to see how BR’s columns are going to benefit from her contributions.

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